I waited to buy an Ableton Push until recently as I wanted the dust to settle a bit knowing there would be incremental updates. The 9.1 beta offered more Push features which piqued my interest. Of course before taking the plunge I went back and watched the Ableton videos on push and some user videos.
I then noticed MacProVideo.com had two video series on Push (fyi - I’m not affiliated with MacProVideo and don’t benefit from sales).
Taking the time to watch these gave me an understanding of Push’s features and workflow which contributed to me jumping in with Push. I’ll offer a mini-review of each series below and how they differ and overlap.
Subscription or Download?
First off I’m new to MacProVideo and thought I’d share some notes on their delivery model. The Subscription allows you to get access to their entire library for a month. The iPad app is quite good and lets you stream if you are subscribed. If you want to watch videos offline (like while flying on a plane without WiFi, you’ll want to go the download route. You’ll want download if you think you’ll refer to the videos after your subscription has expired.
I went with the “Subscribe” model for these videos. I know Live quite well and knew I’d watch them, take notes, and probably not return to them after a month. The other reason I went with Subscribe model was to save a bit of money as I knew I’d be watching more than one video series.
Note: These videos aren't just for Mac users. They run fine on Windows and are applications specific. I had a little trouble with the video player on the latest version of Firefox, but chrome worked fine.
Push 101 - Create & Perform With Push!
This course is a great tour and how-to style series. The presenter does a good job taking you through all the main features of push step-by-step.There are lots of close-ups of the the Push display giving a good view of the user experience.
Just taking the time to go through this course will give a true sense of what Push is about as a creative tool. Little time is spent on using Push as a performance tool and “User” mode is only mentioned in passing.
All this being said, this series will really help you with your buying decision if your not sure what Push does.
Here is sample video on “Hot Swapping Drum Sounds”
More on this course here including links to more sample videos, and a course outline see http://www.macprovideo.com/tutorial/push-101-create-perform-with-push.
Push 201 - Jordan Rudess - Pushing The Limits!
While there is a little overlap with the previous mentioned series this course is much less of a “how-to” series and much more about “what” you can do with Push creatively. More time is spent on expressing ideas musically using the note mode and user scales. For example, Jordan takes more time to talk about things like how scales change their function when you toggle “Fixed In Key” parameter. So in the end this videos will inspire you to dig deeper into keys and modes.
Here is a sample video of “Exploring Chords”.
More on this course here including links to more sample videos, course outline see http://www.macprovideo.com/tutorial/push-201-jordan-rudess-pushing-the-limits.
While they overlap a little, these videos are mostly complimentary in nature. Just watching these before hand shortened my learning curve once I got the unit. Now that I have the Push I’m going through them one more time as a review. So for me the $25 for a month pass for both these video was a great value.
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If you go the month pass route, here is another series worth a look once you finish the Push videos – Maschine Virtuosity by Jeremy Ellis - http://www.macprovideo.com/tutorial/maschine-virtuosity. While he uses Maschine in the video, the real focus of the series is his technique and how he maps instruments to pads. In other words, a lot of what is in this series could be translated to any pad controller.